Pack Expo Las Vegas Exhibitors: Getting your Best Return from the Show–Part I (Pre-Show)

As a brand enthusiast and marketing strategist, one of the most common challenges I get from potential clients has to do with return on investment. We all want to have some sort of guarantee that if we invest X, we will get a return of Y. However, when it comes to investing in your brand or certain marketing strategies and activities, the ROI can be really tough to gauge and measure. Trade shows are no exception.

That said, I can tell you as a previous exhibitor at more than 25 Pack Expo events, trade show return on investment has a lot more to do with what the exhibitor does before and after the event than what transpires during the exhibition. Pre-show planning is essential if you hope to have a successful event. If your organization didn’t have a pre-defined plan already outlined before going to the exhibition—including priority assessment, fulfillment and follow-up—chances are you will struggle to identify a positive ROI as it relates to the trade show.

If your organization is waiting until the week you return from the show to compile the visitor leads generated and start fulfillment, may I suggest that you are already behind the curve. The benchmark set by industry leaders include daily lead compilation and fulfillment performed during the show. Today’s attendees are savvy and their expectation is that exhibitors they visited are equally as savvy. And while timely information request fulfillment is important, it quickly loses its effectiveness without a succinct follow-up plan.

On rare occasions, an extraordinary circumstance may take place on the show floor that leads to an unforeseen business opportunity, but more often than not, the success of an exhibition comes down to pre- and post-show planning on the part of the exhibitor. So, let me ask you…how was your planning process?

We are quickly approaching the start of Pack Expo Las Vegas, the biggest packaging and processing show of the year.  For many organizations, this single event represents the largest annual spend from their overall marketing budget. As such, it’s far too important to leave to chance. Even if your pre-show planning has been lacking, I’m here to tell you, there’s still time—albeit not a lot. Before you step foot in your PELV booth, be sure your organization has outlined a specific plan with regards to your assessing your lead priorities, the timeliness of any fulfillment to be done, and the visitor contact follow-up.

Although seemingly simple, you will be amazed at how much better prepared your organization will be as it relates to show activity with a well-defined plan.